Friday, September 08, 2006

Show 21 - What the Chinaman Told the Jew

Show 21 - What the Chinaman Told the Jew

I decided to put an episode together with these songs that mention ethnic groups and nationalities after my ears repeatedly perking up when I heard lyrics about "what the Chinaman told the Jew" in these and some later blues songs. The Willie Blackwell song comes from a different place that includes a strange mix of patriotism, violence, and proud fatherhood. It has disturbing lyrics about a man preparing bringing home a Japanese skull during World War II for a newborn son. There's a good discussion of the song from Jim O'Neal at his Bluesoterica site. Though its the only one that features that kind of viciousness towards different people, I thought it was thought provoking regarding how others are thought of at different times.

14th Street Blues - Blind Joe Taggart
Bullfrog Blues - William Harris
Barbecue Blues - Barbecue Bob
Memphis Boy Blues - Memphis Jug Band
Junior's, A Jap Girl's Christmas for Her Santa Claus - Willie '61' Blackwell

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

This podcast has been my introduction to the blues and I am absolutely LOVING it! Thank you so much for this comprehensive, interesting, entertaining show. It's really motivated me to go explore some old blues artists. Thank you and keep up the good work!

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